House Adopts FY 2018 Spending Bill Including EPA Funding

September 14, 2017 – The U.S. House of Representatives voted 211-198 to adopt H.R. 3354 – the Make America Secure and Prosperous Appropriations Act – which contains funding for the federal government for FY 2018.  The omnibus bill combines appropriations provisions from 12 separate bills, including the legislation that funds EPA.  While the House has completed its action, the Senate has not considered nor voted on appropriations legislation yet.  Since it is virtually impossible for a Senate bill to be passed and the two bills to be reconciled by the end of the fiscal year on September 30, 2017, on September 8, 2017, Congress adopted H.R. 601 (now Public Law No. 115-56), which is a Continuing Resolution (CR) to provide continued funding for the federal government through December 8, 2017 and avoid a government shutdown.  As previously reported, the House bill calls for level funding for state and local air grants ($228.2 million) and a 7-percent reduction in EPA’s overall budget. It would provide $75 million for grants under the Diesel Emission Reduction Act and $40 million for Targeted Airshed Grants and retain fine particulate monitoring grants under Section 103 authority. It includes several riders affecting the air program including postponement of the implementation of the 2015 ozone NAAQS (calling for designations to be submitted by 2024 and promulgated by 2025).  During the debate on the House floor this week, several more amendments related to air quality were offered.  One amendment, adopted by a vote of 225-186, prohibits EPA from using the social cost of carbon in rulemaking.  The other, adopted by 218-195, prohibits funding for EPA to enforce the Obama Administration’s methane rule.  An amendment to keep EPA from closing or consolidating regional offices failed by a vote of 201-212.  For further information:  https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/house-bill/3354